Thursday: Transparent as the Sunlight
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Image © Chris Weathered from GoodSalt.com

Read James 5:12. Commentators have puzzled over why James seems to make such a major issue out of swearing solemn oaths. Even if the intent were to prohibit all speech of this kind, why would it seem to be urged as important “above all” as he has spoken about in this chapter or perhaps in the … [Click to read more …]

Wednesday: Models of Patient Endurance
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Image © Providence Collection from GoodSalt.com

Read James 5:10-11. What do Job and the prophets have in common? Why do you think these examples are highlighted? What personal lessons can we take away from these stories for ourselves amid our own trials? The prophets of Israel were faithful in preaching the word of the Lord without altering or compromising it. Hebrews, … [Click to read more …]

Tuesday: Grumbling, Groaning, and Growing
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Image © Standard Publishing from GoodSalt.com

When is the Second Coming? Why are we still here? It’s not surprising that now, in the 21st century, we have doubters and scoffers. In the history of the church, this is nothing new. The most dangerous threats to Israel throughout its history came not from their enemies but from within their own ranks and … [Click to read more …]

Monday: How Near is “Near”?
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Image © Lars Justinen from GoodSalt.com

James 5:8 affirms that Christ’s coming is at hand or near. But, after nearly two thousand years, how are we to understand this promise? Jesus described the coming kingdom (Matt. 4:17, Matt. 10:7, Matt. 24:33) by means of parables to teach the unfamiliar heavenly things in terms that are understandable. A close study of these … [Click to read more …]

Sunday: Waiting for “Rain”
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Image © Providence Collection from GoodSalt.com

Farmers are directly dependent on the weather for their livelihood. If the weather is too dry or too wet, too cold or too hot, their produce will be adversely affected. In drier countries, such as Israel, the margin of safety is even less, and the importance of plentiful rain at the proper times is significantly … [Click to read more …]

Sabbath: Getting Ready for the Harvest
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Read for This Week’s Study: James 5:7-12, Rom. 13:11, 1 Cor. 3:13, Luke 7:39-50, Col. 4:6. Memory Text: You also be patient. Establish your hearts, for the coming of the Lord is at hand(James 5:8, NKJV). In Greco-Roman times (as in some places still today), a flurry of activity preceded the coming of a visiting … [Click to read more …]

Inside Story: Trail of Death, Part 1
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Joel Sandoval Joel Sandoval grew up in an Adventist home, but his life was not transformed by God’s grace. As a teen he resented the restrictions that the church represented. At age 15 he dropped out of church and joined a gang. He quickly became involved in organized crime, drugs, and spiritism. He had his … [Click to read more …]

Thursday: Blame the Victim
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Religious Stock Image people mad wild

When someone has done wrong, the natural tendency is to try to escape responsibility. Often people try to do this by transferring the responsibility to someone else-including the person who has been wronged. Murderers excuse themselves by pleading self-defense or blaming their upbringing. By saying they were enticed, sexual abusers blame the victim. Husbands and … [Click to read more …]

Wednesday: Fat and Happy (for Now)
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Image © Jeff Preston from GoodSalt.com

You have lived on the earth in luxury and self-indulgence. You have fattened your hearts in a day of slaughter (James 5:5, ESV; compare Ezek. 16:49, Amos 4:1). What do these passages link to luxurious indulgence? In the ancient world the notion prevailed that there was a fixed amount of wealth, meaning that if the … [Click to read more …]